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Chapter 1: Because
A/N: This is my first ever ScoRose. It was inspired by a banner and it took me two days to write it. It's dedicated to my sister, who read it and told me to rewrite it - so I did.
The Roman numerals are the chronological order of things.
IV. Because she doesn’t know what to do.
Life after Hogwarts took the friends off to London and into a flat together. Albus grumbled because there were only two bedrooms and Scorpius told him in no uncertain terms that the two of them were not going to be the ones sharing, but he got over it and got used to it. After awhile he even began to like the idea of the two of them together – his best friend and favourite cousin. Still, after only half a year, he found his own place to live. Much as they all loved each other, they all thought that perhaps this was a good thing.
Rose began working in the Ministry and would one day become an Unspeakable, after her training was complete. She loved the work and Scorpius liked to tease her, trying to get her to reveal some secret of national importance. But she only laughed and distracted him – he liked being distracted by her though. While she was learning secrets, he was working at Gringotts bank, under her uncle Bill. When she wrinkled her nose and asked him why he would want to work in something so dull as finance he put on a silly grin and said he had always liked being near large amounts of money. For all her teasing, he was rather good at it too.
They grew comfortable together and before either knew it, three years had passed. They were twenty two and in love and it didn’t seem as if anything else could possible matter. Work in the morning and then they would take turns cooking, or cook together, or when they were especially tired or lazy order take-out. They would lie in bed in the dark and talk about their days and their futures and what they wanted to do someday – some of their best plans were made there, lying together, not touching except for their fingers, tangled together in the middle. Then one or the other would have enough of talking and would distract the other. They both rather liked getting distracted.
Scorpius was the first one to think that maybe there should be more. Ron was the first one to know he was thinking it, after Scorpius showed up in his office one afternoon, shut the door, and asked if they could talk. He wanted to say no, Scorpius could see it in his eyes, but Ron also knew his wife would likely leave him over it and he would never see his daughter again. Thinking about how much he liked his wife – he said yes. He even approved the ring.
Rose never saw it coming. They had just finished eating dinner and she was opening another bottle of wine, because they always did on Saturdays, and he asked for her attention. When she turned around, he was holding a bouquet of her favourite flowers – carnations – and in the other hand an open box. Black velvet with a shining diamond ring nestled inside. Not white gold, or silver, as was popular, but gold because she liked gold best and he thought she looked beautiful in it.
He asked the only question that could possibly accompany such a display and smiled up at her. She could see all his love for her in his eyes, and all his hope. Her mouth fell open in shock and she dropped the bottle opener. An unsteady hand set the half-opened bottle on the counter behind her and she just continued to stare at him. Then tears welled up in her eyes and she looked at him and thought about how she loved him, and about how that had come to be. How she would never have spoken to him if her father hadn’t told her too. How it had made her father turn purple when she brought him home. How her father had nearly combusted when she’d told him she loved this man and was moving in with him.
Fear gripped her. She had always liked goading her father, and doing exactly what he told her not to. What if that was why she was with Scorpius? Could she be in love with him for all the wrong reasons?
Scorpius must have seen the joy in her eyes turn to fear, and then horror, for his face fell and he stood, reaching out to her. Rose jerked away and ran out of the room, then down the hall and out the door.
II. Because he makes her laugh.
It came as a great surprise to many, though not to those that knew him best, when Albus Potter was sorted into Slytherin. It came as no surprise, not even to those that knew him least, that Scorpius Malfoy was as well. James, for all his teasing, was flabbergasted but, in a rare show of wisdom, made it known it didn’t matter one whit to him. Rose went on being his best friend and often lamented she hadn’t also gone to Slytherin – but then remembered that she rather liked the cosy warmth of Gryffindor tower better than the eternal chill of the dungeons.
Albus gradually got over his fear of befriending Scorpius – after all, it was either Scorpius, who possessed intelligence and wit, or the other two in his dormitory, who were idiots. Over the years at Hogwarts they become as close as brothers, a fact that comforts Scorpius. Albus, who has always had a brother and a large family, thinks little of it. Rose has always seen it though.
Because the two boys were nearly inseparable, Rose could hardly help making friends with Scorpius as well. Not that she was ever against it; indeed, it was her logic that brought Albus round sooner than he’d have done on his own. He’s not, as she liked to tell him, terribly bright. Scorpius took great pleasure in hearing her tell Albus that and the result of the comment was often the two boys scuffling good naturedly on the floor while Rose rolled her eyes and went back to her school work or a novel or whatever she might have been doing.
He makes her laugh. He isn’t loud and outrageous, not like her cousins James and Fred, nor even Dominique. Just as the first time he made her laugh, on that train ride so many years past, he is quiet and subtle. Sometimes it is some time before the full weight of what he has said hits a person. Sometimes the recipient of a barb doesn’t ever understand, but that is perhaps safest. Whatever it is, and however it happened, it is for this reason they are friends. So when his parents are called away to Italy on an emergency just before Christmas, and Rose learns that he is to be alone for the holiday, she insists that he come to her home. Not an invitation or a suggestion – that would leave room for refusal or argument, and Rose likes to get what she wants.
Ron turns a brilliant shade of purple and Hermione is afraid he may never breathe right again, but Scorpius is allowed to stay in the guest bedroom for the holidays. Albus is only just down the street and Scorpius would have stayed there except the Potters were housing Uncle Charlie in their spare bed, so Rose’s it was. Rose hears her Uncle Harry tell her father that there is absolutely nothing he can do about their friendship, so he may as well get used to it. Hermione scolds him and asks isn’t this sort of thing why they fought that bloody war anyway? So would he please stop grumbling and call the children for supper.
Scorpius heard too, she knew it when she turned and saw him standing not two feet away, listening. He had a funny smile on his face, but when she met his eyes she was rather sure it was a good sort of funny. Then when he spoke she knew it for sure. He’d never had such good hosts, he told her, and she believed him.
III. Because he thinks she’s beautiful.
Rose was frantic when seventh year descended upon them. It was only October and she already saw N.E.W.T.S. looming before her. The boys just laughed and Albus said how that was just like her. He moved away then, heading toward the food he could not seem to get enough of, but Scorpius lingered back. She was hunched over a textbook at a corner table in the library, scribbling furiously in her notes. He touched her hand to get her attention and smiled his little half smile, saying it would be all right. She smiled back and packed up her things to walk with him to dinner.
After a few days of real panic she calmed down, just in time for Halloween. An enterprising individual from Ravenclaw decided that the seventh years needed to relax just a little and organized a party where they were all to dress up in costumes and dance until the early hours of morning. They congratulated themselves on the first truly successful secret ever kept by students from the teachers and began to party the night away – in a very innocent manner. They were still in the castle after all and no one was quite willing to risk the wrath of the headmaster.
Fortunately no wrath appeared and the night ended in a bit less than tame manner but with dignity still intact for all but a few. Rose was still laughing when they reached the entrance to Gryffindor tower, where she was to bid the boys good night. Albus was occupied telling one of her fellow Gryffindors good night, she and Scorpius expected to stand patiently by. Rose was dressed as Circe, her hair held back by a silver circlet, and when she looked up at Scorpius in just a certain way, he lost his breath. Before either quite knew what was happening, he had bent his head and touched his lips to hers in the most gentle of kisses, then whispered how beautiful she was. So she kissed him again.
That year he took her home for Christmas. Albus forbade it and Rose told him just what she thought of his interference. All these years, she told him, he had never once had a problem with her and Scorpius. He reasoned that in all those years they hadn’t been kissing in dark corridors, but Rose ignored him and went anyway. So she met his evil father, who wasn’t so evil at all – just rather snobby. His mother, though, was rather nice.
V. Because she wanted to.
Ron was startled out of sleep when he heard a loud banging on the front door. It only lasted for a few seconds, then he heard the door open and someone come running in. He leapt up out of his recliner, grabbing his wand off the end table, and prepared for the worst. A tear stained Rose came tearing into the living room and threw her sobbing self into her father’s arms.
“Rosie?” He wrapped his arms tightly around her. “Rosie, baby, what’s wrong?”
“Oh Daddy, I’ve ruined everything.”
“What are you talking about? My Rosie couldn’t ruin everything. Maybe bread pudding, but not everything. What’s happened?” He stroked her hair, waiting for an answer as she sobbed into his chest. They were standing thus when Hermione flew into the room, wand at the ready.
“What’s going on?” She demanded, and then saw who Ron was hugging close. Concern replaced the look of readiness, and she tucked her wand away, walking over to her husband and daughter.
“Rose? What are you doing here sweetie?” Rose was crying too hard to answer, so Hermione looked to Ron for answers.
“I don’t know honey; she flew in here like a bat out of hell saying she’s ruined everything. Hasn’t told me what’s on yet.” Hermione nodded decisively, discerning that her daughter’s tears needed time to dry up before she could talk.
“I’ll put the kettle on.”
Several minutes later Rose was seated at her parents’ old kitchen table with a warm mug of tea between her hands, sniffing away the last of her tears. Ron and Hermione were watching her warily with great concern, waiting for her to tell them what was happening. Finally she breathed in deeply and seemed to draw herself together. After a fortifying drink of tea she spoke.
“Scorpius asked me to marry him.” When neither parent seemed surprised, she went on. “And I panicked. I was so excited, I was going to say yes ...” She began crying anew, tears trickling out of her eyes, blurring her vision and she knew she wasn’t looking very pretty. “I was going to say yes – but what if I’m not really in love with him?”
Ron and Hermione exchanged incredulous looks. This was not what they had expected at all.
“Rosie, what do you mean what if you’re not really in love with him?” Ron asked gently.
“Just that, Daddy. What if I’m not?”
“Well... You’ve been with him for going on five years now – living with him – and you wouldn’t do that if you didn’t love him. Would you?”
“Oh Daddy, you’ve never liked him. And I’ve always liked doing exactly the opposite of what you want – what if he’s the same?”
“You mean to say, you said no because you’re afraid that you love him because I don’t?” Hermione discreetly exited, giving Ron a pat on the shoulder as she went. Rose nodded pathetically and Ron sighed.
“Sweetheart, you love him because you love him. Not because I don’t like him. And I do not, not like him.”
Rose looked up. “You like him?” She sounded surprised and unsure.
“Would I have given him my blessing otherwise?”
“He asked your permission?” Ron nodded and Rose melted. “Oh that’s so romantic.”
“You just got nerves is all.”
Rose smiled brilliantly at her father and jumped up. “I have to go.” She ran out the kitchen door and Ron heard a ‘pop’ as she disapparated. Hermione came back into the kitchen, a soft smile on her face.
“Very sweet, darling.”
“He’s not good enough for her.” Hermione leaned over the back of his chair and kissed his cheek.
“She’s your baby girl – no one’s good enough.”
Scorpius was sitting on the sofa staring at the ring in his hands when Rose came bursting in. Her face was tearstained and his eyes were red as they met hers. He stood quickly and faced her, looking at her with concern. For a long minute they just stared at each other – then Rose spoke.
“I’m sorry I ran. I got scared and I ran and it was so, so stupid. I love you. So much.”
“Rose – I...”
“Ask me again.” She told him. “Please ask me again.”
He went to her and stood staring down at her, so close that she was in his shadow. They were mere millimetres from touching and her breath was ragged. He reached out one hand and smoothed her hair back from her face, his fingers lingering on the soft skin between her ear and her cheek.
“Rose,” he whispered. “Rose Jean Weasley, love of my life, will you marry me?”
This time she said yes – because she loves him.
I. Because her father told her not to.
The first time she said hello to him it was because her father told her never to have anything to do with him. So of course she was curious and did exactly the opposite. Really, she reasoned, if Daddy expected her to stay away from someone he needed to present his reason. He hadn’t and she decided she would have to discover a reason for herself. Even at eleven years old she was a force to be reckoned with. So, dragging her cousin along with her, she walked along the train until she found the boy. He was sitting alone in the last compartment on the train, staring out the window.
“Hello.” She said, taking the seat across from him. Red in the face, Albus sat down beside her and avoided looking at their travelling companion. “I’m Rose Weasley.”
The boy gave her a very curious sort of look, as if he too may have been warned away from association. She saw similar thoughts in his eyes and he wavered on the edge of speaking.
“This is Albus. He’s not usually so quiet.” She gave the offending cousin a glare and nudged his ribs with her elbow.
“Ouch, Rose, quit it!” He hissed. Then, giving Scorpius as very suspicious look, he leaned over to whisper to her. “You’ll be in trouble if Uncle Ron finds out you’re talking to him.”
Rose just scowled. “I don’t see why.” She announced in a clear voice, making Albus wince and try to shush her. Scorpius was staring out the window again and completely ignoring them. “He didn’t give any real reason.” Then she turned to Scorpius.
“Do you know why,” she asks him. “We shouldn’t like you?”
Scorpius turned and regarded her, and then Albus, with a very solemn gaze. Looking Rose right in the eye, he spoke quietly and with great conviction.
“Because, my father is evil.”
Albus’ eyes grew round as dinner plates and he nudged Rose, trying to get her to leave with him. She was having none of it, looking at Scorpius inquisitively. Finally, after a minute of holding his steady stare, she smiled and gave a little laugh.
Albus turned his round, incredulous eyes on her but she was watching Scorpius. He just turned back to look out the window but she saw one side of his mouth turn up in a little smile, and she laughed a little to herself, but Scorpius heard it and decided he liked the sound of her laugh. Spending the next several years at Hogwarts trying to make this girl laugh wouldn’t be so bad, he decided.